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10 War Films You Can Watch On OTT

Last updated on: November 21, 2023 21:43 IST
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There have been relatively few war films made by Bollywood, perhaps because they are expensive and difficult to shoot.

Also, invariably, there are accusations of inaccuracy, disrespect, jingoism, or all of the above.

Of late, war films -- particularly those that tell stories of the 1971 War and Kargil -- have been produced.

The recent Pippa was based on a true story while the upcoming Sam Bahadur is a biopic of Field Marshal Sam Maneckshaw, the incomparable military leader.

If you like this genre, Deepa Gahlot picks recent war films and Web series that you can watch on OTT.


Regiment Diaries (2018)
Where to watch: Netflix

This little-known stirring docu-series is about various Indian infantry regiments.

The viewer can see the rigorous training, the valour and patriotism of the soldiers, minus any fictional embellishment.

There is the history of these regiments, their mottos, emblems, rituals and ceremonies, and also the camaraderie they share. It's an insight into the real lives of those who defend the country's borders.


Gunjan Saxena: The Kargil Girl (2020)
Where to watch: Netflix

Jahnvi Kapoor played the real-life Gunjan Saxena, India's first female combat pilot in the Indian Air Force, in a biopic directed by Sharan Sharma.

Determined to fly for the country, Gunjan, with the encouragement of her father (Pankaj Tripathi), and over the objections of her brother (Angad Bedi), suffers the taunts and jeers of the all-male team of trainee pilots and the bias of the trainers, to make it to the cockpit.

Eventually, she proved her courage and patriotism during the 1999 Kargil War.

The film was inspiring for young women, who were told through Gunjan's example, that obstacles can be overcome with hard work and dedication.

Shershaah (2021)
Where to watch: Amazon Prime Video

Sidharth Malhotra starred in the biopic of real-life war hero Captain Vikram Batra in the award-winning film directed by Vishnuvardhan.

During the Kargil War of 1999, Captain Batra was martyred while fighting the Pakistani army, under extremely tough conditions, and was awarded the Param Vir Chakra posthumously.

Along with portraying his extraordinary courage, the film included his sweet love story with the feisty Dimple Cheema (Kiara Advani).

Jeet Ki Zid (2021)
Where to watch: ZEE5

This series, directed by Vishal Mangalorkar, was based on the life of retired Indian Army special forces officer Major Deependra Singh Sengar, played by Amit Sadh.

He was left paralysed below the waist during the Kargil War and confined to a wheelchair.

Still, he was determined to recover, and got the unstinted support of his wife Jaya (Amrita Puri). The show is about the soldiers in training and at war, but also about one man's inner strength and courage.

1962: The War in the Hills (2021)
Where to watch: Disney+Hotstar

Written and directed by Mahesh Manjrekar, the series was set during the 1962 War, and starred Abhay Deol, Sumeet Vyas, Rohan Gamdotra, Mahie Gill and Akash Thosar.

It portrayed the battles fought in the Galwan Valley and Rezang La, where 125 soldiers of the Indian Army had to defend their post against 3,000 soldiers of China's People's Army.

The finest on this chapter of Indian history remains Chetan Anand's 1965 film Haqeeqat, which, unfortunately, is not on a streaming platform yet.

Bhuj: The Pride Of India (2021)
Where to watch: Disney+Hotstar

Made for the big screen but released on OTT during the pandemic, Abhishek Dudhaiya's Bhuj was set during the 1971 War, and starred Ajay Devgn as Squadron Leader Vijay Karnik, who was in charge of the Bhuj air base.

When the landing strip was damaged in air strikes by Pakistani planes, he rebuilt the strip in 72 hours, with the help of 300 women from a nearby village, led by a fiery Sunderben (Sonakshi Sinha).

Shoorveer (2022)
Where to watch" Disney+Hotstar

Directed by Kanishka Varma and created by Samar Khan, the Web series starred Regina Cassandra, Armaan Ralhan, Manish Chaudhari and Aadil Khan.

It told the thrilling story of the formation of an elite task force called Hawks, combining the best candidates from the army, air force and navy, trained to tackle any mission, and neutralise any enemy attack.

Their training, personal interactions and challenges make up the show.

When there is fatigue setting in over endless India-Pakistan and terrorism angles, the show added a slightly different take.

Major (2022)
Where to watch: Netflix


A film right out of Mumbai's nightmares.

As a horrified country watched the terrorist attack on the city between November 26 and 29, 2008, in real time, Major focused on the carnage at the Taj Mahal hotel, as commandos fought the terrorists laying siege to one of Mumbai landmarks.

Sashi Kiran Tikka's film pays tribute to Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan (played by Adivi Sesh), who was martyred while trying to save the lives of hotel guests and his own men, for which he was posthumously awarded the Ashok Chakra.

The film captured, in a straightforward manner, a chapter of contemporary history that needed to be recorded in cinema because television images fade from memory.

Tanaav (2022)
Where to watch: SonyLIV

Sudhir Mishra directed the Hindi remake of the Israeli hit Fauda, created by Lior Raz (who also plays the lead) and Avi Issacharoff, with their personal experience of having served with the Israel defence forces and their operations against Palestinian militants.

Mishra sets the thriller in Kashmir, where intelligence units and special forces have to deal with Pakistan-supported terrorism.

Kabir Farooqui (Manav Vij), retired from the special forces, runs a jam-making enterprise and lives a peaceful life with his family.

His former commander, Vikrant Rathore (Arbaaz Khan) visits to drop the bombshell that the dreaded terrorist Umar Riaz (Sumit Kaul), believed dead by Kabir's bullet, is alive.

Once Kabir is drawn back to his unit of hotheads, there is no returning till Umer Riaz is found, and his men, indoctrinated to seek martyrdom, are neutralised.

Pippa (2023)
Where to watch: Amazon Prime Video

Raja Krishna Menon's Pippa is set just before the 1971 War, for the liberation of East Pakistan.

Based on Brigadier Balram Singh Mehta's book The Burning Chaffees, it tells of a decisive battle in which the 'pippa' or amphibious tank was used against the Pakistani army and how Indian tanks decimated the enemy.

The film stars Ishaan Khattar, Mrunal Thakur and Priyanshu Painyuli as siblings who take part in the war in different roles.

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